Tories will fight mental health reforms

The shadow health secretary has vowed that the Conservative
party will oppose the proposed mental health bill in parliament,
writes Katie Leason.

In his address to the Conservative party conference in
Bournemouth, Liam Fox said that “the pendulum was allowed to swing
too far and too fast in mental health policy”.

Too much of the care in the community programme had failed both
patients and the public, he said, and too many people with mental
health problems are homeless.

He said: “We will lead the fight in parliament to defeat the
government’s regressive mental health bill. It not only stigmatises
the mentally ill, but it fundamentally threatens our civil

Earlier the chief executive of the King’s Fund told delegates
that the proposed mental health reforms would deter people with
mental health problems from seeking help.

Julia Neuberger said the Labour government had made progress by
introducing the national service framework for mental health and by
pushing the subject as a priority in the NHS, but insisted that the
current proposals are likely to “discourage people with mental
illness from seeking help”.

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